Master of Fine ArtsActing

a scene from

MFA actors perform a scene from Trojan Women, written by Director of MFA Acting David Bridel and the pictured class, in the Scene Dock Theatre at USC. Photo by Craig Schwartz

The USC School of Dramatic Arts MFA in Acting is a progressive three-year course of study that fuses two strands of actor-training: the classical conservatory-style that attunes the voice, body and the intellect to the demands of text and performance; and an innovative physical approach that draws upon the work of artists of the past 50 years.

Working with a faculty of accomplished professionals with extensive experience in theatre, film and television, the program enjoys a close-knit, intimate scale that fosters individual attention. Students develop their craft and their vision as artists, and also gain the knowledge, skills, flexibility, experience and confidence to work in any medium, form or technology. We nurture artists who do not merely adapt to changes in fashion, technology or the ‘industry,’ but will lead, create and innovate.

While the curriculum and faculty honor the uniqueness of every person, the program envisions a self-motivated, collaborative and flexible actor working with purpose to make choices based on her or his personal imagery, and having the craft to execute those choices with clear and decisive actions.

In the spring of the third year, industry showcases are held in Los Angeles and New York for casting directors, agents and managers. Recent alumni of this program have been featured in major motion pictures; television series on HBO, NBC, ABC, CBS, TNT, FX, and the WB; and in theatres across the United States, including Center Theatre Group, South Coast Rep, the Berkeley Rep, the Public, BAM, Classic Stage Company, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, the Long Wharf, Denver Theatre Center, Dallas Theater Center, the Magic Theatre, and many others.

A Day in the Life

Apply Now